Monday, February 1, 2016

Los Angeles, and Mechanical Doping in cycling

And so...I'm away on travel from the 1st thru the 17th of  Feb to the sunny and warm (NOT and NOT) metropolis of Los Angeles. Or, being as LA is roughly the size of New Hampshire, I'm in El Segundo/Manhattan Beach (my hotel is in Manhattan Beach, and about 3 miles away my work is in El Segundo).

Winter has struck California...we had a pretty good storm (by CA standards) roll thru yesterday..and with it COLD (again: by CA standards).

Stopped and picked up Greg (my big brother) for lunch, and we went to our FAVORITE spot: Taco de Casa, or as we have been calling it for a decade or so, Doggy Taco. It's about as authentic Mexican food as you can get...Mexican radio station playing in the little kitchen, Mexican dudes working there...and quite honestly, the BEST little chicken taco's I've ever had....and I've had taco's all over the place...none are better than these!

Greg took this shot just as I was starting in on the first fiendishly tasty little taco. They are just SOOOOO GOOD! If I could make these, I'd never leave home and would likely weigh 300lbs.

After that I dropped him back at the Rocket Factory (he works at Aerojet Rocketdyne) and then headed south to find my hotel. My GPS mislead me and I drove right by the hotel (there's just a driveway off the main road, and it didn't announce I was 'there' until I was already past the driveway...and couldn't see the hotel). So then I was lost...my GPS showed TWO identical address's, but one is 18 miles further north from where I was...so I started heading there. But it didn't seem right...so I stopped and called Jeannie at work and got phone numbers. She also found another hotel (Marriott Residence Inn) very close to where I would be working...I wondered if my travel secretary gave me the wrong address. Went inside and checked...nope...no reservation here. RATS. So I continued to drive north but then stopped AGAIN as it just didn't seem right. Called the original place and confirmed the address, and headed BACK to the first place I drove by...only THIS time I saw a tiny little sign AND the driveway just after the big Toyota dealership. No wonder I missed it...sure was glad to find it and get my car unloaded...I had groceries to go buy.

After groceries I swung by work just as it was nearing shift change...we're working two shifts, 12hrs...6am to 6pm and vice versa...I'm on days. Verified all was good with me showing up in the morning...and arranged to meet one of the guys for dinner...then took off back to the hotel to unload my groceries. Getting ready to head out for dinner soon, which is good cuz I'm STARVED! My taco plate was a LONG time ago!

And so...I traveled heavy as I have a rental car...including the new Mt bike....not sure if I'll get any chances to ride, but didn't want to get the opportunity and have no bike.

Hopefully YOUR winter is going well...tomorrow is Ground Hogs Day...the annual day when a large rodent gives his prophecy of a short or long winter. I'm betting LONG. Stay dry and warm out there!

And on the 2nd title item, I just read that the UCI FINALLY caught someone with a motor in their bike! At the CX World Championships in Belgium of all places! The Belgian lady caught with the motorized bike claims it's not hers, that it belongs to a teammate and the mechanic mistakenly pulled it out of the van, cleaned it up, and she was riding in in the race. Not to call her a liar, but from what little I know about the motor situation, it would raise the overall weight of a VERY light CX bike by at LEAST a few lbs (battery and motor). Sorry, but I can't believe she wouldn't have noticed it...CX racers carry their bikes all the time during the race...at the very first heft she would HAVE to have wondered why it's so freaking heavy (if she truly were innocent). Just not buying it.  But hey....what do I really know? MAYBE she really is innocent (of knowing about it...there is no doubt she was riding it IN the World Championship race). This is the first time anybody has actually been caught in a professional level with a motor in their bike. WOW. Just WOW. Pretty stunning actually, thinking they can get away with THAT. Good on ya, UCI!!

Cheers!

Cheers!

Friday, January 22, 2016

What did I do?

The giant pile of brown stuff is the stuffing from TWO brand new doggie-beds that Sophie (aka: the MONSTER Kracken) destroyed the other day. Totally emptied the bed-shells of their innards. This stuff was spread out ALL OVER the house and took us a while to gather it all up. So here she sits in solitary confinement, with all the debris piled up by her cell (so she can think about what she did).

She IS thinking about that, don't you think? Just look at her. I'm quite sure she's sitting in there thinking "Boy, that was a really bad thing I did today....and I PROMISE I'll never do that again! I'm SO very sorry mom and dad!"

OK...I have to admit that it's FAR more likely that she's sitting there thinking "Gee...they sure are moody today. But when I get out of here, I'm going to JUMP in that AWESOME pile of stuff, and then spread it out all over the house! THAT will be SO MUCH FUN!"

Been a long time since we had to deal with puppy stuff. They sure have a lot of energy!

And finally, what about this crazy weather? I FINALLY have my new mountain bike, and this stupid (though MUCH NEEDED) Godzilla El Nino just keeps rollling storms thru with just enough rain to keep everything goopy. I'm doing some small rides in sandy areas that handle the water well...but I'm really jonsing to get out there and start doing my big weekend rides. Don't see that happening anytime soon...not with our current weather pattern.

And HEY HEY HEY! How about the storm spanking the north-east right now! Looks like a DOOZIE! My bro-in-law sent pics from his farm (north-west of Richmond VA) and it's snowing pretty good already. The news says the DC area is supposed to get something like THIRTY INCHES of snow tonight!!! Anderson Cooper just said it COULD be the biggest storm ON RECORD! Won't that be something! Susie, whenever you finally make it back to work, please update us on your super-storm! What kind of power outages did you have? How much snow did you ACTUALLY GET? Were you prepared with food/flashlights/etc? How cold was it? Rae..how bad  did you get it? I heard from my stepmother that Cleveland got a BUNCH of snow (her son lives there)...not sure how far Columbus is from there...but I'd think you got something. DO TELL pretty-please! Please feel free to chip in and tell your story in the comments...I'm fascinated by winter...really I am! I can read about it all winter long! (GRIN!)

And so...stay warm everybody....or warm and DRY if you're on the West coast. Looks like further north of us is / was getting hammered by more rain today...we were supposed to get it but so far not-a. But the forecast still calls for rain tomorrow too...if not I'm going for a RIDE! If so, I'm NOT going for a ride! Have a great weekend! Should be 2 good football games....woo-hoo! Get those hot-wings and beer ready!

CHEERS!